Inside the Rohloff Speedhub

Many readers will be familiar with the Rohloff Speedhub, a 14 speed bicycle hub gear, and if you don’t know about it then you can go look it up on Google. Understanding how the mechanism works and pulling one apart have been a couple of my long term goals. This article won’t attempt to communicate the former (that is for a separate article I think) but I am going to tell you about how I pulled my hub apart and put it back together again (that is quite important too). You may want to go brush up on your knowledge of epicyclic gears right about now too, because I’m not doing any intro to that topic, it’s all assumed knowledge. Wikipedia has a very good article on the topic. Continue reading “Inside the Rohloff Speedhub”

Chapter 4: Queenstown

Despite the incredibly strong winds at the end of chapter 3, when we got up the next morning it was quite still. After we packed up, our first stop was in town at a very nice bakery that we had been to the previous day; they had really yummy cream cakes. Apparently I have a sweet tooth, or at least that’s what other people say. Our plan was to ride to Queenstown over another Big Hill near Cardrona. Then we had planned to spend a day in Queenstown. While we were sheltering from the wind in Wanaka we had found out some information about a cruise at Doubtful Sound, which departed from Queenstown, so that was what we had planned for our rest day. After Queenstown we were planning to ride to Clyde and the start of the Central Otago rail trail, which we were looking forward to. It was, however, 90 km from Queenstown to Cyde, and even though Dad kept saying “it’s all downhill except for the uphill out of Queenstown” Mum and Vera were a little concerned about that day. Continue reading “Chapter 4: Queenstown”

Putting Photos on the Internet

Some of you may have heard terms like “web quality” being bandied around with regard to images, carrying the implication that photos on websites are generally of an inferior quality (which is often true) compared to what comes straight out of your camera. It was only recently that I found out what the best practice is for preparing photos for a web site, so I decided to share it with you and perhaps you will be able to improve your page load time. Continue reading “Putting Photos on the Internet”

Chapter 3: Wanaka and Antihistamines

The top
The top

Leaving Haast was a day that my parents and Vera had been stressing out about, because it was the Day of the Big Hill (capitals added by me for emphasis). The plan was to ride over Haast Pass, ending the day at a dot on the map called Makarora, which is about 70 km from Haast. Mum was concerned about us not making it, so as a contingency plan we bought “emergency food” in Haast as well as stuff for lunch and snacks and so on. The emergency food was some of those rice instant meals, and the idea was that if we had to put up our tents by the side of the road in pouring rain or snow or whatever, we would have something to eat, even if it wasn’t particularly appealing. In the event that we did make it to Makarora, the emergency food was non perishable, so it could stay squashed down the bottom of a pannier more or less indefinitely. Continue reading “Chapter 3: Wanaka and Antihistamines”

Dynamo hub overhaul

This is based on an article that I wrote for Spokenotes, my bike club’s newsletter, but reworded and with more pictures. Pictures and diagrams are actually a very powerful learning tool for engineering; as an example, I learned how a 14 speed gear hub works primarily from a book that is written in German. I can’t read or speak German at all, but I could understand the pictures and diagrams in the book, and even spotted a mistake in one of them. But I digress. Hopefully from this article you will not only learn how to pull a dynamo hub apart, but you will also get a good idea of how they actually work. Having a background in physics would probably be useful for the latter, but hey, it’s not like it’s general relativity; I learned about electrical generators in high school. Continue reading “Dynamo hub overhaul”